My Baby Rides the Short Bus

The Unabashedly Human Experience of Raising Kids with Disabilities

Edited by Yantra Bertelli, Jennifer Silverman and Sarah Talbot  

Paperback $21.95

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In lives where there is a new diagnosis or drama every day, the stories in this collection provide parents of “special needs” kids with a welcome chuckle, a rock to stand on, and a moment of reality held far enough from the heart to see clearly. Featuring works by “alternative” parents who have attempted to move away from mainstream thought–or remove its influence altogether–this anthology, taken as a whole, carefully considers the implications of parenting while raising children with disabilities.

From professional writers to novice storytellers including Robert Rummel-Hudson, Ayun Halliday, and Kerry Cohen, this assortment of authentic, shared experiences from parents at the fringe of the fringes is a partial antidote to the stories that misrepresent, ridicule, and objectify disabled kids and their parents.

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  • Introduction by Lisa Carver
  • The Other Combat Boot Drops • Rebirth (Emily Zolten)
  • A Bus(wo)man’s Holiday (Kathy Bricetti)
  • The Story So Far (Andrea McDowell)
  • Paging Dr. House (Christina Witkowski)
  • Evaluating Ezra (Kerry Cohen)
  • The Head Game (diagnosis)  (Kim Mahler)
  • Popeye (Thida Cornes)
  • The Letter for Services (Aileen Murphy)
  • Enough Acronyms To Make Your Head Spin: Navigating the System & Advocating For Our Kids
  • Exile To Bridlemile or Where the @#$%&! is My Village?! (Chloe Eudaly)
  • After the IEP (Kim Mahler)
  • Play Therapy (Karen Wang)
  • Accidental Unschoolers (Heather Newman)
  • An Inadvertently Compelling Argument for National Health Care in Five Mutually Incriminating Scenes (Ayun Halliday)
  • Watching My Son Grow: An Illustrated Timeline from Birth to Three Years Old (Joe Dimino)
  • Authentic Activism (Maria June)
  • Interpreting the Signs (Andrea Winninghoff)
  • Seen, Heard, Respected, and Believed
  • What I Said, and What I Didn’t Say (Sharis Ingram)
  • Jackpot! (Amy Saxon Bosworth)
  • What Should Have Been… (Megan Raines Wingert)
  • Building Bridges into Ordinariness (Ziva Mann)
  • Diagnosis Invisible (Stephanie Sleeper)
  • A View through the Woods (Christy Everett)
  • My Friend Christine (Marcy Sheiner)
  • Scout (Robert Rummel-Hudson)
  • How Do We Do It? Respite, Community Support, and Transitions
  • My Mama Drove the Short Bus (Sabrina Chapadjiev)
  • How I Met Jennyalice (Shannon Des Roches Rosa)
  • No Use in Crying (Jennifer Byde Myers)
  • Life Among the Doozies (Anonymous)
  • Glass Houses (Sarah Talbot)
  • Small Victories (Elizabeth Aquino)
  • Dragonflies and Inky Blackness: Raising a Child with Asperger’s Syndrome (Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg)
  • Families: When the Balancing Act Induces Vertigo
  • Our Closet (Diana Robinson)
  • “Because He’s Retarded, Ass!” (Amber E. Taylor)
  • And We Survive (Nina Packebush)
  • Thanksgiving (Kim Mahler)
  • Dual Parentship Status (Jennifer Silverman)
  • Taking the First Step (Yantra Bertelli)
  • This is What Love Looks Like (Andrea S. Givens)
  • Righteous Resources
  • What Do You Know: A Little Practical Advice After All
  • A User’s Guide to Self-Help Literature (Or, Who’s the Real Expert Here, Anyway?) (Dr. Mitzi Waltz)
  • Special Needs Trusts: The Lowdown
  • Glossary of Terms
  • Resources
  • Contributors’ Biographies
  • Acknowledgments
  • Index


  • Yantra Bertelli

    Yantra Bertelli is the mother of four children and an unlikely pet owner. She lives and works in Seattle with her wife and family and thinks up different ways to manage transitions 250,000 times a day. She tends to nudge her children a bit softer than she pushes herself and she always stays up until they have finished their homework or they finally succumb to sleep after putting them to bed over and over again. Yantra was one of the founding publishers of Rag Magazine, was a moderator for Hip Mama website, and has essays published in Breeder: Real Life Stories From the New Generation of Mothers and The Essential Hipmama: Writing From the Cutting Edge of Parenting.

  • Jennifer Silverman

    Jennifer Silverman is an optimist in a pessimist’s clothing. She lives, writes and agitates in NYC, where she is raising two boys, one of whom is autistic. Jennifer has most recently been published in Off Our Backs and Hip Mama, but has written for a variety of parenting publications and community newspapers. She has spoken about her experience raising her son while being an activist at conferences in Washington DC, Minneapolis, Providence and New York with mam*a, a now defunct collective of radical mothers.

  • Sarah Talbot

    Sarah Talbot has been raising an autistic deaf punk-rocker since 1994. She and the other five members of her family reside happily in Seattle, Washington where she makes a living as an Assistant Principal at a comprehensive High School. She has come to be comfortable embodying contradictions—pleading for more services while recognizing progress, advocating for inclusion and protecting teachers, being the mom and being the writer. Sarah has been published in Breeder: Stories from the New Generation of Mothers, and Best Books For High School Students, among numerous alternative periodical publications.

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